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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Berezovsky Denies Link to Sex Abuse Case

Self-exiled tycoon Boris Berezovsky has accused the Federal Security Service and Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko of trying to link him to allegations of child sexual abuse at a Black Sea summer camp.

Berezovsky told Ukraine’s Segodnya daily in an interview published Tuesday that a one-time suspect in the abuse investigation had headed the Ukrainian branch of his International Foundation for Civil Liberties.

But Berezovsky denied any connection to the case and said Tymoshenko was “flirting” with the FSB by “trying to link me to the scandal.”

Tymoshenko is running for president in a January election, and critics have accused her of cozying up with Moscow, which wants to arrest Berezovsky on embezzlement and other charges linked to his time as a Kremlin power broker in the 1990s.

Ukrainian Interior Minister Yury Lutsenko announced last week that the head of the Ukrainian branch of the International Foundation for Civil Liberties had been charged with rape in connection to the investigation into suspected abuse at the Artek summer camp, a former Pioneer camp that opened in 1925 on the Crimean Peninsula and still hosts thousands of children every year. But Ukrainian media later reported that the official was only a witness, not a suspect.

Late last week, Ukrainian media reported that several Ukrainian lawmakers within Tymoshenko’s bloc were suspects in the case. The deputies have denied the allegations, Interfax reported Tuesday.

One lawmaker urged Ukraine’s prosecutor general’s office to question Berezovsky, who lives in London, over his possible involvement in the case, Russian News Service radio reported Tuesday.

In its heyday, the camp covered 3.2 square kilometers and hosted 300,000 children a year, including 13,000 from 70 foreign countries. These days, many of the children come from low-income families and the government covers their expenses.